If you could stuff all of Vegas under one roof, MGM Grand is big enough to accommodate that. Located near the south end of the Strip, this resort is fittingly nicknamed "The City of Entertainment."
Infinitesimally large, diverse offerings to satisfy every type of visitor, show-rific
You don't have to leave the hotel to experience many of the "bests" of Vegas. MGM Grand is home to one of the world's top restaurants -- Joël Robuchon -- along with a stable of celebrity chefs. (Anyone heard of Wolfgang Puck, Tom Colicchio and Emeril Lagasse?) It's also a partier's paradise thanks to Hakkasan, one of the Vegas' hottest nightclubs, and you can get tickets to the epic Cirque du Soleil production "KÀ" as well as major concerts and sporting matchups. And this doesn't even include the awesome pool club Wet Republic.
Open seasonally, the Grand Pool complex is exactly what you'd want in your backyard if your backyard was 6.5 acres. Not only are there several swimming pools and waterfalls, but you can float on a 1,000-foot-long lazy river.
You've heard the cliché: The bigger, the better. This is true with MGM Grand, but being big (and we mean 5,044 rooms kind of big) brings with it some challenges. If you're checking in or out during peak periods, you'll probably find a long line at the front desk. Here's our advice -- have one person wait while someone else goes on a drink run. Such a huge number of rooms also means inevitable waits for things like maid and luggage service. If you want to feel more like a VIP, we recommend staying in the Skylofts. Yes, you'll pay a premium for this but...as they say, you get what you pay for.
Another reality about staying at MGM Grand is that you'll do a lot of walking. You could easily rack up several miles on your Fitbit each day just by going from your room to the pool, restaurants, bars and showrooms. (For those among us who are more lethargic, this may be the one time you request a room near the elevator bank.)
Although remodeled in 2012, the rooms in the West Wing are small and don't have fridges. They're best for couples who want a romantic stay or people who don't mind being in tight quarters.
Keep in mind if you light up in a non-smoking room, that's an additional $300 cleaning fee at checkout. Save yourself the trouble and smoke in designated areas only.
If you're coming to MGM Grand for a convention or soak up the sun at Wet Republic, there's a back valet off Koval Lane. Use it.
If you're not going to Hakkasan, you'll enjoy people-watching in Centrifuge lounge -- especially between 10 p.m. and midnight. That's when you'll see all the 20-somethings in stilettos and ties waiting to enter while you're kicking back with a cool drink.
Looking for a more affordable version of Joël Robuchon? Go next door to L'Atelier Joël Robuchon. It serves similarly divine gourmet food (the kind that delights not only your palate but all your senses), just with toned-down décor, counter service and a menu of small tasting portions.
The best way to avoid the long taxi line -- which can stretch around the porte cochere on a busy night -- is to take the Las Vegas Monorail or Deuce / SDX buses. MGM Grand has convenient stops for both of them making transportation along the Strip and to downtown easy.